UK floating wind farm welcomes Batwind energy storage kit

Offshore wind developer Equinor has installed Batwind solution – said to be the world’s first battery for offshore wind – at its Hywind Scotland floating offshore wind farm.

Illustration (Photo: Pixabay/Creative Commons CC0)

Electricity produced at the world’s first floating offshore wind farm Hywind Scotland, located 25 kilometers off the coast of Peterhead, will be transported via cables to an onshore substation where the 1MW batteries are placed and connected to the grid.

The battery capacity is the equivalent of more than 128,000 iPhones, according to Equinor.

The Batwind storage solution works, in many respects, like an energy warehouse, according to the developers Equinor and Masdar which said that they will test where to build the warehouse, how big it should be, and how to run the logistics.

Sebastian Bringsvaerd, Development Manager for Hywind and Batwind, said: “The variability of renewable energy can to a certain extent be managed by the grid. But to make renewable energy more competitive and integrate even more renewables to the grid, we will need to find new, smart solutions for energy storage to provide firm power. How to do this in a smart and value creating way is what we are aiming to learn from Batwind.”

According to a recent report by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the installed costs of battery storage systems could fall by two-thirds (66%) by 2030.

Batwind is fully financed by Hywind Scotland partners, Equinor and Masdar and is a first step towards a scalable, global renewables energy storage system.

The brainwork behind the storage solutions is in the algorithms, which Equinor and Masdar are developing, based on multiple data sources including weather forecasts, market prices, maintenance schedules, consumption patterns and grid services, according to the companies.

“Digitalisation is a key driver here. The more we feed Batwind’s power management system with data, the smarter it gets. In addition, Batwind can be utilised for other renewable energy sources including solar and onshore wind. We believe this will expand the market for all renewable energy sources.

“The value in storage is not necessarily in the amount of energy you can store, but how you optimize, control and offer smarter energy solutions. By developing Batwind we get real time data, commercial experience and technical verification,” concluded Bringsvaerd.